Whoever said "blondes have more fun" was hanging out with the wrong brunette. #justsaying.
Contrary to popular belief... ALL Girls just want to have fun. Not just blondes. And according to recent study, brunettes actually have more fun than blondes do.
I dyed my hair blond for three months this summer. Why? Because every brunette wants/needs to try it once in her life. So I fell for the trap. First let me say this: you do feel more wild. There's something about having such a highlighted hair colour that makes you want to be seen, and do crazy things. But you know what else comes with being blond? People thinking that you're dumb. Because essentially, Blond is not a hair colour, it's a concept.
So here is why I say fvck you to blondes, and bring out my wild brunettes to have some fun...
Study proves that men find they do better with a brunette by their side. After conducting a pole from 3,000 people, researchers found at least one in five males surveyed admitted to feeling more successful when they are dating/married to a brunette.
Haven't you heard? Brunettes like to feel respected, and know our place in a relationship. Unlike blondes who come off as "softer" or "sweet", we prefer to tell you how it really is even if we come off as harsh or b!tchy. #sorrynotsorry.
It's no question that summer is a favourite season in Montreal — and with good reason. Once the sun arrives, the city comes alive with plenty of sights to see, things to do and places to go.
Summer 2021 promises to be especially fun because, after a year and a bit of being cooped up indoors, what could be better than soaking up Montreal at its finest?
The sunny season is also known for another Montreal tradition: moving day. With July 1 being when most new leases begin, the end of June is a flurry of activity as people move out and move in all across the city.
Whether you're new to Montreal, are just moving across town, or are simply looking for ways to make this summer an unforgettable one, there are tons of ways to appreciate Montreal.
Pepsi® can help you do just that with the Drink Pepsi Get Summer Stuff contest. With weekly chances to win $10,000 plus instant prizes like barbecue grills, bicycles, paddleboards and merch, this contest is just what this Montreal summer calls for.
Look out for specially marked Pepsi cola products, and get ready to make the most of summer with these seven activities that prove why living in Montreal is the best.
Why You Need To Do It: With over 3,000 kilometres of bikeways, the island and Greater Montreal are a cyclist's dream. Not only is biking a fun, efficient and eco-friendly way to get from point A to point B, but it's also a great way to explore the city.
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Why You Need To Do It: If you think you need to be beachside to paddleboard, think again. The still waters of Parc Jean-Drapeau make it the perfect place to go for a paddle.
Whether you're a seasoned pro or a beginner, getting on the water is a fun way to discover Montreal and maybe even meet new people.
Why You Need To Do It: Mont-Royal remains one of the city's most popular destinations. Not only is it accessible via walking or transit, but it also offers hiking trails that are suitable for all levels.
Pack that knapsack (like the one you could win with Drink Pepsi Get Summer Stuff contest) with all your favourite hiking goodies. Don't forget your camera because you're going to want to take a pic or two once you reach the top.
Why You Need To Do It: Montreal has some of the best museums in the world. No matter what you're interested in, there is an exhibition that will pique your interests (and get you out of the summer heat).
The recently refurbished Biodôme houses five diverse ecosystems where you can see everything from penguins to exotic birds. The city's history museum, Pointe-à-Callière, has exhibits spanning First Nations history to the modern day. And for art buffs, the Musée d'art contemporain de Montreal showcases works from local and international artists.
Why You Need To Do It: Summers are made for grilling and chilling. Whether you're a fan of a classic steak, some grilled chicken breast or know the perfect recipe for seared aubergine, there's always something delicious to sink your teeth into at a barbecue.
While you don't necessarily need a backyard to have a barbecue, you do need a grill. Fortunately, Pepsi is giving some away with their Drink Pepsi Get Summer Stuff contest.
Why You Need To Do It: Montreal has an iconic arts and culture scene. Wandering around the city and exploring street art is a feast for the eyes and a great way to get to know the place.
Boulevard St-Laurent, in particular, is known for its murals and graffiti. There's lots of art to be found in Quartier des Spectacles, too. Whether you're solo or with your crew, this is one way to have a picturesque summer.
However you find yourself celebrating summer in Montreal, if you pick up a Pepsi, you might just win some cool prizes like a barbecue grill, bikes, paddleboards or tons of merch. Not to mention a chance to win a weekly prize of $10,000 — which could help you deck out new digs.
Keep your eyes peeled for specially marked Pepsi products with on-pack codes as part of the Drink Pepsi Get Summer Stuff contest. All you have to do to enter is redeem your code for a chance to win.
Five months later, McGill has issued one statement and launched three investigations. But the accusers — who asked to be called "the girls" to protect their safety — told MTL Blog they've been left in the dark.
They said they received no updates on how investigations are progressing or whether the accused is facing any penalties.
Meanwhile, they said the student has continued attending classes.
McGill has been following its protocol for investigations into allegations of sexual assault — but this protocol has left the girls and other students in limbo for the majority of the school year.
"We can't feel safe on campus with him lurking around, viewing us as prey," one of the girls, Eva*, told MTL Blog.
Most of the girls were minors at the time of the alleged assaults, as was the accused student, whose name has not been released by the university or the police.
Eva told MTL Blog the accused student frequented bars near McGill residences where he would "talk to, touch and kiss [girls] who were drunk," and that he would persistently "beg" female students to "hook up."
In written testimonies shared with MTL Blog, each of the girls outlined how the accused student sexually assaulted them both off and on campus.
One of them said the accused sexually assaulted her when she was "completely blacked out" from alcohol.
What was McGill's reaction?
McGill responded to the December petition within three days. A statement written by Deputy Provost of Student Life and Learning Fabrice Labeau assured the student body and the general public that McGill was "looking into the matter."
"Our foremost concern right now is student wellbeing," Labeau wrote. He expressed what he called a "steadfast commitment to a campus community where everyone feels safe."
Though none of the girls had formally reported their assaults to McGill at the time — something Eva said was because "the resources weren't publicized and the social consequences for reporting were immense" — that changed by the end of December.
Eva said one of the girls filed a police report, and three of the girls filed complaints with McGill, initiating three internal investigations. However, neither the police nor the university was able to confirm details of these investigations to MTL Blog.
A month later, the university had not issued any new statements nor updated the girls involved, Eva said.
MTL Blog asked Cynthia Lee, McGill's associate director of media relations, to confirm the status of the investigations in February. She said that according to McGill's Policy Against Sexual Violence, "when a formal report is made, the University must immediately appoint an external Special Investigator to conduct a full and impartial investigation."
She also said "the entirety of this process is covered by confidentiality regulations," and that she could not disclose any further information.
The silence surrounding the allegations began to disturb other McGill students who said they had to interact with the accused student in their classes.
Anna Ni told MTL Blog she attended an online psychology course with the accused student, where she said he would participate in group discussions while he was part of the ongoing investigations.
She said McGill's ambiguous response to the allegations made her feel "small and voiceless."
"I am grateful for the fact that McGill has resources that can help students struggling with this situation, but McGill's vagueness in their [statement] gave me the impression that they were not actively taking care of this situation," she said.
In a screenshot Ni took of her classmates discussing the accused student's presence in the course via group chat — which she shared with MTL Blog — one student asked, "I thought the school took care of this? Why is he still allowed to study?"
Amrita Kaur, a first-year student unaffiliated with the girls, told MTL Blog that McGill's communications to the student body following the incident — mainly emails consisting of links to support resources — felt "empty."
She emailed the Office of the Dean of Students to express her "extreme disappointment" in the school for allowing the accused student to attend classes "as if nothing ever happened."
"Now I wonder if it's true [...] all great institutions sweep sexual assault under the rug," she wrote in her email to McGill, which she forwarded to MTL Blog.
She said she did not receive a response from the university.
Lee told MTL Blog that at McGill, until an investigation is complete, "disciplinary actions cannot be taken pre-emptively […] however, interim measures are put in place to ensure the safety and wellbeing of those directly affected."
Possible accommodations include late withdrawal from a course or a change in residence — but they only apply to survivors.
MTL Blog found that according to the Policy against Sexual Violence, the university can take pre-emptive disciplinary action if "there may be a risk of harm to any Member of the University Community."
MTL Blog asked Lee if the fact that the accused student was still attending classes meant that the university did not see him as posing a threat to university community members.
She did not directly respond to the question.
What is the 'Code of Silence'?
There is a legal reason why the university claims it is limited regarding what it can divulge about sexual assault investigations.
Brooklyn Frizzle, vice-president of the Students' Society of McGill University (SSMU), told MTL Blog they believe universities use this law as a "scapegoat" to justify a lack of transparency in cases of sexual violence.
Frizzle said this wasn't the first time students' questions about a case involving sexual misconduct were left unanswered.
"I've lost track of how many emails to the Dean of Students or to the Provost that I've seen, to which there was no response because the university can't legally give a response," they said.
Last year, representatives from l'Université du Québec à Montréal (UQAM) started a petition to amend the Act so post-secondary institutions could "inform victims of the disciplinary measures taken against their aggressors."
"Evidence shows that [the Act] contributes to victims' lack of trust in institutional channels, since it keeps the person most affected by the complaint from accessing crucial information for their healing process and to their sense of safety at school and/or work," the petition read.
McGill's Policy states that all investigations should be conducted within 90 days. According to this timeline, the girls' investigations should have ended by April.
But even when the investigations are complete, the Code of Silence means the girls cannot be informed of the penalties that may or may not be imposed on the accused student.
As Lee told MTL Blog, "details or updates concerning particular cases cannot be provided to anyone outside those immediately involved."
This means other students won't know if they can expect to see the accused student in their classes again next semester.
Could the 'Code of Silence' change?
While the public may never know if and how the accused student has been disciplined, McGill's Annual Report on the Policy against Sexual Violence gives some indication of the number of investigations the school has conducted.
McGill provided MTL Blog with a copy of the Annual Report, which specifies that, in 2020, eight of nine completed investigations yielding "a finding of sexual violence" resulted in disciplinary action.
These actions included "admonishment and conduct probation, formal reprimand [and/or] cease and desist communication and contact orders," but it's unclear which actions applied to which investigations.
Out of 18 incidents of sexual violence reported to the university in 2020, 83% were submitted by women. Just one report was submitted by a man, while two were submitted anonymously.
In May, a National Assembly committee presented its findings on possibly amending Bill 64. However, whether the amendments pass remains to be seen. For now, those involved can only know that the investigations are finished.
A 2016 Université Laval study found that 36.9% of Quebec students, faculty and staff experienced some form of sexual violence by another person affiliated with their university.
"It feels constant, like there's [always] some big allegation of sexual violence that we're talking about that we're trying to pressure the university to respond to," Frizzle said.
"It's just the name [that] changes every semester."
*The source's name has been changed at their request to protect their safety.
With files from Ilana Belfer, MTL Blog.
If you require resources or assistance surrounding sexual assault in Quebec, the CAVAC helpline is available 24/7. Those who may need support can call 1-866-532-2822. Other crisis lines and 24/7 options can be found at The Lifeline Canada.